High Seas and High Teas

On 9 July 1800, Pierce Collits was tried at the Old Bailey in London for receiving stolen goods, including muslin, lace and handkerchiefs, and sentenced to fourteen years' transportation.

On 14 December 1801, Pierce and his wife Mary, a free woman, arrived in Sydney on the Minorca. They would have endured a journey of some months on a vessel that carried both convicts and free settlers, and have landed in a colony that was only 13 years old when they arrived.

Whatever happened to the Hendrys?

This blog was co-written by Ashley O'Neill of Scotland.

Of all the different places to plonk myself down in the National Library of Australia, the Newspapers and Family History Zone is my favourite. Awash in the amber hues of a Canberra twilight, abuzz with the gentle hum and occasional click-clack of microfilm readers, visitors flock to this glorious space to fastidiously uncover scant gems of their family history or perhaps just read the newspaper.

Dad and Dave

Today the term ‘Aussie battler’ sits easily in the Australian vernacular, is used nightly on current affairs television programs, and in popular culture in characters such as the Kerrigan family in the 1997 film The Castle. For the first half of the twentieth century the Rudd family were the quintessential Aussie battlers; the working class family who continued fighting against the odds, always embracing their challenges with humour and optimism.


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